In January 2013 it took just three days for the Seleka Coalition and the Government of the Central African Republic to reach a peace agreement. Kennedy Tumutegyereize and Nicolas Tillon of Conciliation Resources' East and Central Africa programme analyse what the prospects are for sustainable peace without wide public participation.
Reflecting on the evolution of mediation support, Jonathan Cohen highlights how the legitimacy and durability of peace agreements are enhanced by inclusive processes. In this chapter from 'Building Peace in 2013' – a new HD Centre publication – he makes the case that peace processes must be less elitist and more able to meet the needs and expectations of those most affected by conflict.
With aid effectiveness under increased analysis in the UK and budget cuts being discussed at the EU level, Teresa Dumasy makes the case that a focus on peace, partnerships and the promotion of legitimate politics holds the key to effective and sustainable development.
Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was an unexpected choice for the job of taking Somalia out of its long and self-perpetuating period of ‘transitional’ government. Far from being a Somali warlord, he had spent most of the last 20 years playing a leading role in civil society conflict resolution. An Accord 21 author for Conciliation Resources, he is interviewed here by the issue's co-editor, Sally Healy.
Armed conflicts are neither defined nor confined by national borders, writes Accord series editor Alexander Ramsbotham. Peacebuilding strategies need to ‘think outside the state’ – through regional diplomacy and cross-border civil society networks, and by strengthening the social contract in conflict-prone borderlands.
Starting a war is easy. It is much harder to end it. Kristian Herbolzheimer assesses that the Colombia–FARC peace process has arrived at one of its most critical points. Not everyone understands and shares the decision to break from the narrative of the past and to proceed to develop a new story, one that is free of resentment.
If you want to reframe relations shattered by violence and war as a basis for future security you cannot avoid the difficult dialogues that lie at the heart of reconciliation. Jonathan Cohen, our Director of Programmes, comments on why key questions of appropriate timing and engagement are crucial.
Lack of basic services and disruption at border areas is fostering disharmony in West Africa. Following a fact-finding visit to communities in Côte d’Ivoire, Janet Adama Mohammed reflects on the issues they face as they attempt to rebuild after conflict. Working together, and with imagination and cooperation, local people can focus their energies collectively on alternatives to violence.
Isolated from one another, Armenians, Azerbaijanis and Turks remember separate histories which reinforce antagonistic conflict narratives. Laurence Broers argues that initiatives, such as the release of new film Memories Without Borders, are needed to challenge historical taboos and keep alive the possibility of reconciliation.
The Government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have reached a Framework Agreement that puts an end to one of the most protracted armed conflicts in the world. Kristian Herbolzheimer and Emma Leslie praise a peace process characterised by perseverance, innovation and creativity, but warn that implementation of the Agreement is a complex and fragile process.